Does Your Roof Leak In Heavy Rain? Here’s What To Do

Posted on February 25, 2023

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Does Your Roof Leak In Heavy Rain? Here’s What To Do

A roof that leaks during heavy rain can be a homeowner’s worst nightmare, leading to costly repairs and even health hazards. It can be a dreadful problem, especially since cracks in your roof can be hard to detect until the rain hits. 

At Trusted Roofing, we’re here to help you find and fix these leaks. In this blog post, we’ll tell you how to deal with roof leaks in heavy rain and ways to prevent them in the future. Whether you have a metal, tile, flat, or brand-new roof, we’ve got you covered.

So sit back, grab a cup of coffee, and let’s solve this problem so you can enjoy the rain without worrying about water damage.

Common Causes Of Roof Leaks During Heavy Rain

If your roof leaks only in heavy rain, there may be one or more underlying issues, many of which may usually go unnoticed during dry weather. Here are some common causes of roof leaks and how you can fix them:

Clogged Gutters

Gutters are designed to channel water away from the roof and the building’s foundation. If they are clogged with debris during a rain shower, water will overflow and splash over the gutters and onto the roofing material, and may even slip behind them and into your interior.

Damaged Underlayment

The underlayment is a waterproof layer that sits between the shingles and the roof deck. If it gets damaged or deteriorates, rainwater can reach inside the attic, causing leaks. This is particularly common in older roofs or in roofs that have experienced significant weather damage. In such cases, the underlayment needs to be patched or replaced, depending on the extent of the damage.

Improperly Sealed Roof Accessories

Protrusions in the roof, such as rooftop HVAC units, vents, skylights, or chimneys, are leak-prone areas on a roof. They need proper flashing and sealing to prevent water infiltration. If there’s an issue in these areas, it’s easy for rainwater to leak through these systems. So you need to ensure that they are correctly installed and sealed.

Faulty Roof Installation

The improper installation of roofing materials can create gaps or overlaps that allow rainwater to seep in. This is particularly common in DIY installations or in cases where unlicensed or inexperienced contractors have been working. To fix roofing faults, it’s essential to hire a reliable and experienced contractor who can repair the damage and rectify any roof design faults, and cover gaps.

These were some common reasons behind roof leaks in heavy rain, regardless of what kind of roof you have. However, there can be different sources behind the leak, depending on a specific type of roofing material. So let’s learn what causes roof leaks in each kind of roofing system, and the proper ways to fix them.

Asphalt Shingles

If you live in a rainy region, you need to have a watertight roof covering. Make sure you have high-quality asphalt shingles that are laminated, or reinforced with fiberglass. Organic asphalt shingles are easily damaged by water over time and develop mold and algae that slowly eat away the roofing material. 

If you notice discoloration on the shingles or blue-green algae, it’s time to get your shingle roof inspected for water damage. If your area is prone to hail, look for holes and granule loss on the shingles. You may see tiny black or brown grains in the gutters or yard, which is a sign your shingles have been damaged.

Metal Roof

Metal roofs are a popular choice for their durability and longevity. However, they can still experience leaks during heavy rain for several reasons that may not be as evident when it’s dry outside. If your metal roof leaks in heavy rain, below are some reasons and solutions for the issue:

Loose Fasteners: 

Over time, the screws or nails that attach the metal panels to the roof deck can become loose, creating gaps that allow water to seep through. A simple solution for this problem is to inspect the nails and screws, tighten the ones that are in good shape, and replace the damaged or missing ones. If your metal roof has a hidden fastening system or interlocking panels, you’ll need to call professional metal roofers for a refastening service.

Corrosion: 

Metal roofs are susceptible to corrosion, especially if they are exposed to salt water or certain chemicals. Corrosion can cause the metal to wither away and develop cuts and cracks, allowing rainwater to slip through. If more than 25% of the roof has this issue, you must replace the panels.

Tile Roof

Tile roofs are a beautiful and classic choice for homes, especially those with a Mediterranean style. They are sturdy but can be prone to leaks during heavy rain. From damaged or missing tiles to debris buildup, there are several issues that can lead to water seeping through your tile roof and causing damage. If your tile roof leaks in heavy rain, here’s what you need to know:

Damaged Or Missing Tiles: 

Damaged Tiles
Damaged Tiles

Over time, tiles can become damaged or cracked or even fall off the roof altogether. This allows water to seep through the roof and cause leaks. It’s essential to inspect your roof regularly and replace any damaged or missing tiles as soon as possible to prevent water damage to your home. This is especially important if you live in an area that’s prone to high winds, hail, or thunderstorms.

Complex Roof Design: 

Furthermore, tile roofs are often installed on homes with complex rooflines and architectural details, which can create additional challenges for flashing installation. In some cases, flashing may not be installed in all critical areas, leaving vulnerable spots on the roof that lead to leaks during heavy rain. So it’s essential to ensure your roofing contractor has substantial experience with tile roof repair and installation.

Flat Roofs

Flat roofs are a popular choice for sheds, garages, commercial spaces, and industrial buildings. However, they are also more susceptible to leaks and have a shorter lifespan (10 to 20 years) than other residential roofing materials. If your flat roof leaks in heavy rain, here are some potential causes, and their solutions:

Poor Drainage: 

Poor Drainage
Poor Drainage

Flat roofs should be properly designed with maximum water drainage along with snow-melting systems. If the roof is not sloped correctly or the drainage system becomes clogged with ice or debris, water can accumulate on the roof and eventually seep through the roofing membrane. You can fix these issues by getting a proper roof inspection or looking for signs of clogs and damage around the drains. Additionally, you can discuss with your roofing contractor about installing heat cables and roof crickets on your flat roof to aid with drainage.

Cracks Or Holes In The Membrane: 

Flat roofs are typically covered with a waterproof membrane that is designed to prevent water from seeping through. Rubber (EDPM), plastic (TPO and PVC), and modified bitumen are the most common materials for flat roofing membranes. However, over time, these materials can shrink and develop cuts that allow water to penetrate the roof. This can also occur if there’s more foot traffic on the roof than recommended, or if it’s damaged by sharp objects, tools, or machinery. To fix it, you’ll need a flat roof repair service where contractors will cut the damaged section of the membrane out, and patch it with a new layer of material.

If your roof is older than 20 years, it’s best to get any damaged materials replaced. However, if you have a new roof and it’s leaking, this can be more problematic, and you should hire an expert roofing contractor to solve the issue.

Does Your New Roof Leak In Heavy Rain?

Roof leaks in heavy rain
Roof leaks in heavy rain

Getting a new roof is a great investment for your home, as it provides better protection against leaks and weather damage. However, sometimes new roofs may still leak during heavy rain, which is usually a sign of faulty installation or low-quality roofing materials. Here’s a detailed explanation of the causes, and some solutions:

Poor Workmanship: 

Even though you paid top dollar for a new roof, if it is not installed correctly, it can lead to leaks. This may be due to improper installation of flashing, underlayment, or other components.

In addition to the roofing materials themselves, various accessories such as skylights, vents, or chimneys may be installed on a new roof. If these accessories are not installed correctly, they will create vulnerable areas that may leak during heavy rain.0

Manufacturing Defects: 

While rare, it is possible for the roofing material itself to be defective, which will lead to leaks. Imagine finding out that your shiny new roof has a leak due to a manufacturing error, it’s like buying a new car with a mechanical issue.

Weather-Related Issues: 

Even though your new roof should provide protection during extreme weather conditions, it may still leak if it isn’t designed or installed to handle your local conditions. That’s why it’s important to consider the weather conditions in your area when choosing the type of roofing materials for your home.

When you find out that your new roof leaks in heavy rain, it can be frustrating and concerning. So, it’s important to have it inspected by a second roofing contractor who is an expert with roofs such as yours. They can identify the source of the leak and determine whether it is covered under warranty. In some cases, it may be necessary to make repairs or modifications to prevent further water damage. The good news is that once the issue is resolved by a top contractor, you can get back to your normal routine without worrying about more leaks.

To prevent these issues in the future, you will need to take appropriate precautionary measures. In the next section, we’ve included some simple steps you can take to maintain your roof and be free from roofing issues and leaks:

How Do You Prevent Roof Leaks?

Address Issues Promptly: 

If you notice any signs of a leak, such as water stains on your ceiling or walls, it’s important to address the issue promptly. Ignoring a small leak can lead to more significant damage and costly repairs later on.

Use Quality Roofing Materials: 

Investing in quality roofing materials during repairs and replacements can go a long way in preventing leaks. Use Class 4-rated shingles or a watertight system like a metal roof for maximum protection in rainy areas.

Improve Your Attic Ventilation: 

Proper attic ventilation can prevent moisture buildup, which leads to roof damage and leaks without it. Make sure your attic has adequate ventilation, including vents or fans that allow for proper airflow.

Practice Regular Roof Maintenance: 

This includes removing debris such as leaves, branches, and dirt that can clog gutters and cause water to back up onto the roof. Regular inspections by a roofing professional are also helpful in identifying any small issues before they turn into bigger problems.

If you live in middle Tennessee, we can help you get your roof back in good shape! Reach out to us for a free roof inspection and estimate.

Free Roof Inspection & Estimate On Roof Leak Repair

At Trusted Roofing, we have a team of highly skilled and experienced professionals who can identify the root cause of your roof leaks, and provide the most effective roof leak repair service. Whether it’s damaged shingles, faulty flashing, or improper installation, we have the knowledge and technology to provide a permanent solution. Reach out to us at (615) 714-4300 for a free roof inspection or estimate on your roof leak repair. We’ve helped hundreds of homeowners, and we’d be happy to help you get the peace of mind that comes with a well-maintained home.

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